Tue | Aug 22, 2017

Accountant General Department to introduce biometric verification for pensioners

Published:Tuesday | April 4, 2017 | 4:56 AM
Accountant General Carlene Murdock says when the department introduces the new system it would no longer mail life certificates to pensioners.

The Accountant General’s Department is moving to introduce a biometric verification system to identify pensioners.

Biometrics is a security process that relies on unique physical, or behavioural, characteristics as a means of verifying personal identity.

The most common form of biometric verification is fingerprinting.

Other forms include voice identification and facial recognition.

Accountant General Carlene Murdock says when the department introduces the new system it would no longer mail life certificates to pensioners. 

A life certificate is an official document that is used to verify that a pensioner is still alive, and is, therefore, eligible to continue receiving a pension.

The department mails a life certificate to each pensioner every three months to be signed, certified or notarised and returned by the end of the following month.

Murdock says arrangements will be made for persons who suffer from physical disabilities and cannot be identified by biometrics.

She says the use of biometric authentication will significantly lessen processing time as pensioners information will be recorded in a quicker fashion.

While not giving a specific timeline for the implementation of the system, Murdock says she hopes it will happen this year.